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Business

FG to attract foreign investors for Actors Guild of Nigeria

The Minister said that the contributions of entertainment have played a significant role in growing Nigeria’s economy and soft power.

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FG to attract foreign investors for Actors Guild of Nigeria

The Nigerian Government has said that it is going to work with the Actors Guild of Nigeria (AGN) to attract foreign investors into the country’s film space and also diversify the economy.

This was disclosed by Minister of Foreign Affairs, Geoffrey Onyeama, in a meeting with the AGN on Friday in Abuja.

READ: Everything you need to know about Mary Njoku, founder of the newly acquired ROK

The Minister said that the contributions of entertainment to the economy should not be understated, as it played a significant role in growing Nigeria’s economy and soft power.

  • “Ministry of Foreign Affairs has a role in partnering with Nollywood because very clearly, the creative industry plays a very important role, not just in the culture of a country, but in its economy. We know the percentage of America’s GDP that is contributed by the creative industry. I believe that the module of the Nollywood industry is what holds the greatest hope for the country. Because, we see a spontaneous creation of a whole economic sector, without any input from government but the efforts of practitioners.”

READ: How MultiChoice is getting the economy working with BBNaija

READ: Nigeria signs MoU with United Arab Emirates to establish Joint Commission

He praised Nigeria’s film industry for creating its own niche which has been used as a template for other African film industries to follow.

  • “What the industry has achieved is quite phenomenal and should be a template for other sectors and it should give us hope, notwithstanding where we are economically. We will be happy to partner with you to further promote Nollywood internationally and there are different ways that we can work collaboratively together to draw a roadmap of how we can work together to achieve value addition.”

READ: FG approves $2 billion for first phase of $4.6 billion Ibom Deep Seaport

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READ: The long road from NITEL to NTEL and the dashed hopes

What you should know 

  • The FG has also marked Nigeria’s film industry as a means to diversify the economy away from oil.
  • Nairametrics reported in September that the Federal Government had inaugurated a Steering Committee on the Commercialization of the Nigerian Film Corporation (NFC), with the aim of making Nigeria’s film industry a continental entertainment power.
  • Minister of Information, Lai Mohammed, said the NFC would be repositioned, as the FG had engaged the services of a Business Development Consultant to conduct due diligence on the corporation and the sector, to recommend a strategy that was suitable for its reform and commercialization.

READ: FG urges contractors to complete Ebute Meta–Apapa seaports railway extension by January 2021

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Business

CBN’s Emefiele vows to reject the continuous importation of maize in Nigeria

The CBN has said that it will oppose all attempts to continue the importation of maize into the country.

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Banks' stakeholders express 4 main concerns bothering the sector right now, CBN, MARKET UPDATE: CBN’s historic agriculture lending; Is it yielding the desired results? 

The Central Bank of Nigeria (CBN) has said that it will oppose all attempts to continue the importation of maize into the country.

This is geared towards encouraging local production as the apex bank believes that maize farmers in Nigeria have what it takes to close the maize demand gap of over 4.5 million metric tonnes in the country.

This was made known by the CBN Governor, Godwin Emefiele while speaking in Katsina on Thursday during the unveiling of the first maize pyramid and inauguration of the 2021 maize wet season farming under the CBN-Maize Association of Nigeria Anchor Borrowers’ Programme.

READ: Nigeria must eat what we produce, agriculture is the way out – Buhari

Emefiele said, “With over 50,000 bags of maize available on this ground, and others aggregated across the country, maize farmers are sending a resounding message that we can grow enough maize to meet the country’s demand.’

He explained that the maize unveiled at the ceremony would be sold to reputable feed processors adding that this would in turn impact positively on current poultry feed prices, as over 60% of maize produced in the country were used for producing poultry feed.

Emefiele said that the apex bank was ready to provide support to the youths that are willing to engage in agriculture and encouraged them to embrace agriculture.

READ: Nigeria secures $1.2 billion loan from Brazil for agriculture modernization

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Speaking at the event, the Katsina State Governor, Bello Masari, said the state had suffered a setback in agriculture as over 60,000 hectares of farmlands were uncultivated due to insurgency, which hindered farmers from gaining access to their means of livelihood.

On his part, President Muhammadu Buhari, who was represented by the Kebbi State Governor, Atiku Bagudu, while unveiling the pyramids, reassured the farmers, processors and other value chain participants, of the support of government towards ensuring that they perform optimally.

What you should know

It can be recalled that in July 2020, the CBN included maize importation to its list of 41 items banned from assessing forex at the official market as it directed all banks/authorised dealers to immediately discontinue the processing of Forms M for maize/corn importation into the country.

The apex bank in its circular said that this measure is aimed at increasing local production of the commodity, stimulating a rapid economic recovery, safeguarding rural livelihoods and increasing jobs.

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Business

FG releases N29.1 billion advance for deployment of Covid-19 vaccines

The FG has announced the release of N29.1 billion to the NPHCDA as an advance for the operational cost of deployment of the Covid-19 vaccines.

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Power: Mambilla Power Project not prioritised by Ministry of Power for 2021 Budget - Finance Minister

The Federal Government has announced the release of N29.1 billion to the National Primary Health Development Agency (NPHCDA) as an advance for the operational cost of deployment of the Covid-19 vaccines.

This is as the government has expressed its commitment to procuring 29.588 million doses of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine through the AVAT initiative, coordinated by AFREXIMBank,

This disclosure was made by the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning, Mrs Zainab Ahmed while speaking at ‘Collaborative Africa Budget Reform Initiative (CABRI) General Assembly webinar on Friday.

What the Minister of Finance, Budget and National Planning is saying

Ahmed in her statement said, “Therefore, the supplementary budget for COVID-19 vaccines will cover the cost of additional vaccines over and above those provided by COVAX, as well as the full cost of operations and logistics for delivering the vaccines around the country.

“Already, the sum of N29.1bn has been released from the Routine Immunization budgetary provision (Service Wide Vote) to the National Primary Healthcare Development Agency (NPHCDA) as an advance for the operational cost of deployment of the COVID-19 vaccines. The N29.1bn represents about 52 percent of the amount required over 2021-22”, she said.

Mrs Ahmed stated at the 18th General Assembly of CABRI that the World Bank has indicated willingness to provide needed facilities in support of the country’s Covid-19 vaccination plan.

Considering key elements of Nigeria’s vaccine financing strategy, she said that the government is working on a supplementary budget to provide for the cost of vaccine procurement and delivery

She said, “The Federal Ministry of Health plans to vaccinate 70 per cent of eligible (18 years and above) Nigerians over the 2021 and 2022 fiscal years.”

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She noted that the nation has received commitments from COVAX for Covid-19 vaccines that could cover 43.1 million of the eligible population, as donations from some development partners.

On the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic and the oil price crash on the Nigerian economy, she noted that prior to the pandemic, implementation of the Economic Recovery and Growth Plan 2017-20, prudent resource management and fiscal policy implementation had resulted in 11 consecutive quarters of GDP growth, with GDP growth rising from 1.91% in 2018 to 2.27% in 2019.

Mrs Ahmed also noted that “the government had begun the process of moving our economy away from its primary dependence on oil for revenues and foreign exchange, and we’re making steady gains in addressing infrastructure and human capital challenges.”

 

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